Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers delivered a threat to Charlotte and state officials this week about the future of the company’s headquarters in NC. Rogers was discussing implications of the outcome of the NC Utilities Commission’s (NCUC) investigation into the morass surrounding the merger. According to the News and Observer, Rogers was speaking at a conference out of state. He noted that if the merger inquiry findings are not favorable to the company, Duke may choose to relocate out of state. A Duke spokesperson quickly emphasized that this was not a threat to leave NC, but it sure sounded like one. Read More…
Governor-elect Pat McCrory will make significant decisions on energy issues, especially in year one of his term. These choices will shape our energy future and have a direct impact on North Carolinians and our environment. But given McCrory’s 29 years at Duke Energy, will he show predilection for the energy industry or will he ensure full deliberation and consider what’s good for all of us? Read More…
While the debate rages on about the Duke-Progress merger and the NC Legislature becomes more determined to create a dirty energy policy for our state, another course is being charted – one that does not involve fracking, offshore drilling, coal-fired power plants or more nuclear power.
Environmentalists say the fracking bill passed Thursday by the NC House does not allow sufficient time to develop rules to ensure families and communities will be protected from the risks associated with natural gas development.
“The new law does not give agencies time, staff or money to know the facts and develop responsible policies. This is a new industry for North Carolina. State agencies are being forced to write regulations in the dark,” said Preyer. “North Carolina must not write regulations without facts on impacts to communities, the environment and public health. Setting 2014 as a deadline is arbitrary and irresponsible. Geologists say gas resources here are modest and will not attract industry interest for years, so it makes no sense for the legislature to race this fast on such a big decision for the state.”
House Democrats urged their Republican colleagues to allow more time for study, to create better consumer protections for landowners.
But McDowell County Republican Rep. Mitch Gillespie made it clear compromise was not in the cards:
“What my father told me one time, he says, ‘You can go and give and compromise, but there comes a point where you have to stop.’ And so I have personally reached that point,” said Gillespie, urging his Republican colleagues to vote down any amendment offered to his bill.
The NC House voted 66-43 to pass S 820, which now returns to the Senate to concur with House changes.
To listen to the tone of Thursday’s debate, click below: